MD-82 Catches Fire After Gear Collapse At Miami International (UPDATED)

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An MD-82 operated by new Dominican Republic-based carrier Red Air caught fire on Tuesday evening after its nosegear collapsed on landing at Miami International Airport (MIA). All 130 passengers and 10 crew members onboard were evacuated from the aircraft. According to reports, some minor injuries were sustained and three people were transported to local hospitals. All three have since been released.

“Red Air #203 from Santo Domingo had its landing gear in the nose of the plane collapse, which seems to have caused a fire,” Miami International Airport stated via Twitter. “[Miami-Dade Fire Rescue] responded & extinguished the fire. Some flights have been delayed as a result.”

Following the collapse of its nosegear, the aircraft reportedly struck a communications tower and a small building before catching fire. Red Air Flight 203 was inbound to MIA from Las Américas International Airport (SDQ) in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The accident occurred at approximately 5:45 p.m. local time. Several runways at MIA remained closed as of Tuesday night. The NSTB is sending a team of investigators, who are expected to arrive on Wednesday. According to Red Air, the Dominican Comisión Investigadora de Accidentes de Aviación (CIAA/Aviation Accident Investigation Commission) is also investigating.

This article will be updated as more information becomes available.

Kate O’Connor works as AVweb's Editor-in-Chief. She is a private pilot, certificated aircraft dispatcher, and graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. A bit odd, runway excursion from collapse of nose gear.

    In any case, one of the tasks for a serious airport is to be able to remove disabled aircraft from a runway or nearby. Runway out of service can be costly.

    Decades ago lifting kits were being sold, typically inflatable pneumatic wafers.

    • Ah, an accident focused blog I will not name because its fool operator blocks mention of other blogs reports the runway excursion led to collapse of nose gear.

      Fire was from fuel spill from a wing.

      Photos look like mains collapsed too.

      Report is that airplane veered after slowing down on runway centerline.

      I _speculate_ nose gear steering problem or one main gear collapsed first.

      • Note that the FD’s statement is either misquoted, wrong, incomplete, …..

        Wrong seems most likely, keeping mouth shut until getting facts is a VGI.

        (Police are good at that usually, but media want instant info which they proceed to get backwards. And now politicians do – Bouncing Biden and ‘jefe’ Trudeau Jr. are current poster fools for that. jTj pushed weak commissioner of RCMP to extract body counts from RCMP in Nova Scotia during an active shooter event, police have good reasons for not being premature on such secondary details including policy of notifying verified next of kin first, and in that case waiting for ashes of burned buildings to cool before looking for remains. I say ‘Shut up and let emergency agencies do their job.”)

  2. Old aircraft seem to have gear collapse issues. While working at BNA, a Value Jet landed normally and one of the main gear wheel assemblies broke off bounding down the runway. Just like this accident, the wing dropped skidding down the runway igniting flames. Talked to FSDO later. This was an old surplus MD80 from Delta or somebody. He said the the outer part of the gear strut looked perfect, shinny and nice. He said the inner part of it had corroded until there was hardly any strut wall thickness remaining. He was amazed it hadn’t broken off and collapsed before. Then TWA arrived one day in one of their really old DC9s. On touchdown, gear collapsed and it too skidded off the runway, but coming to a halt without fire. TWA removed the radios and a few other items and said to the BNA fire department, “It’s yours!” Old airplanes with hidden wear.

    • Does require proper maintenance, including protection of inside of strut.

      (Boeing overdid it on the B767, so much inhibitor that it migrated into wheel bearings – not an effective bearing lubricant so before long bearing(s) failed, axle broke, and wheel escaped.
      First time at Moses Lake clever analysis washed the bearings for examination. Second time at Calgary the culprit was revealed.)

      And avoidance of certain cleaning chemicals that can cause hydrogen embrittlement of high strength steel, IIRC.

      LG that is not redundant is life limited, on cycles, but corrosion is harder to predict.

  3. There is now video online from a left side window seat passenger that starts with the aircraft fairly stable down the runway, but it cuts to the inside after a shimmy noise starts followed by bumps and grinding. One of you heavy metal drivers should check it out.